ENID, Okla. (TCD) -- A Garfield County couple faces felony charges for allegedly disposing of a newborn child and burying the baby in an unknown location.
Court records show Kevin Helton and his estranged wife Sarah Helton are both charged with second-degree murder or in the alternative, child neglect relating to the death of the newborn.
According to court documents cited by the Enid News & Eagle, Sarah Helton gave birth to the child in December, and the child died between Dec. 26, 2022, and Jan. 10, 2023. The court documents allege the two "engaged in with contemptuous and reckless disregard of, and in total indifference to, the life and safety of another, regardless of human life, although it was done without any premeditated designed to effect the death of any particular individual."
They allegedly did not provide the newborn with proper medical attention, shelter, food, hygiene, and other necessary care for the child to survive.
On March 31, the Noble County Sheriff’s Office contacted the Garfield County Sheriff’s Office after a Noble County deputy reportedly saw a photo on the Heltons’ phone showing the dead child next to a dog.
Kevin Helton allegedly texted Sarah Helton, "Do you want me to tell your daughter what really happened to her sister? I buried her this morning because you left her in the trash."
The Enid News & Eagle reports investigators searched the phone and discovered several photos and videos of the newborn, as well as text messages about the baby.
Sarah reportedly went to Kevin’s house on or around Dec. 17, and she started complaining about labor pains. She gave birth several hours later in the bedroom, and Kevin told investigators the child "was breathing."
KOKH reports Kevin told detectives he "was not responsible for the child and was just trying to help."
Investigators obtained a search warrant for Kevin’s home, but "had difficulty staying inside the residence for an extended period of time due to the extremely unpleasant environment," which included dog feces on the floor in several rooms, including the bedroom where Sarah gave birth.
Kevin reportedly said Sarah left his residence not long after giving birth, but he then found the baby girl in his trash can "two or three days after she was gone."
Sarah, however, allegedly told investigators she moved back in with Kevin and did not want to have the child at a hospital because she was worried about an active warrant against her. She reportedly claimed Kevin made arrangements with a midwife and adoption agency, and she said she gave Kevin permission to take the child to the agency. The agency, however, told Garfield County investigators Kevin was not allowed to bring the newborn without Sarah present.
Garfield County detectives reportedly believe the newborn was "deceased and disposed of."